It’s a new month in the Car Biz, a new season is here, and spring has officially arrived. As dealers are doing their monthly evaluation of their website, marketing campaigns, brand messaging etc., here a few items to review to ensure that you are providing the most informative, user-friendly, and engaging website experience for all of your online customers and prospects. Keep reading for 5 spring cleaning tips!
As simple as this sounds, dealers often rely on third parties to update their site, whether it is an agency of one of their third party’s vendor partners. Unfortunately, if a dealer does not have a person who is responsible for that task in the dealership the details get overlooked. You may have updated incentive sliders on your home page but you could find specials or incentives that have expired and do not apply. Also, taking the time to click through all of the banners on your site and making sure it is landing the shopper on a relevant page that has an example of the offer and/or has other information or inventory related to the specific offer.
The majority of dealer websites have drop down menus at the top of their home page which also lives in the mobile menu as well. Common tabs include NEW, PRE-OWNED, SPECIALS, SERVICE, PARTS, and ABOUT US. Taking the time to go through all the menu tabs on the site to make sure everything is current and up to date is key to achieving strong user engagement and conversion. Too many times there are expired offers, expired or no specials, multiple third-party tools, or even options that have broken links, which is a poor experience for the consumer.
Most manufacturers offer a wide variation of rebates on new models that frequently change, especially mid-month. From specific years and models down to the trim levels, rebates can drastically vary. If not displayed correctly, rebates can create a negative experience for the consumer and dealer alike. As transparency has become a necessity in the industry with the majority of the consumers starting their shopping research online, that last thing you want is to start off on the wrong foot by advertising inaccurate pricing. Dealers spend a lot of money and time driving shoppers to their online showroom, let’s make sure our rebates and pricing structure is clear and the consumer will be more likely to engage with your business.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. In automotive, clear pricing, description, and quality photos are all key to driving consumer engagement. Most people are visual, so displaying high-quality photos for consumers to view is a key part of driving them to call, click, or submit a lead. Some dealers have gone to the extreme and installed expensive professional staging booths in their dealerships. Not all dealers have the means or want to spend that much on their photos. From experience, as long as you have good lighting, a decent background, and the cars are clean (preferably right out of detail), you should be able to get quality photos. It’s a simple eye test.
If you talk to any good SEO strategist the first thing you will hear them say is “relevant content is king relation to building your websites organic SEO.” More and more dealers are creating or outsourcing custom content pages for their website to help them with organic SEO. You can create articles and landing pages on just about any topic connected to your dealership or brand that someone may search online. Articles including or covering model comparisons, general search terms for brands by towns, or topics like financing, leasing, warranties, service, etc. This is great for relevancy and often you can find these articles and pages on websites under a resource tab or within the menus at the top of the page. As these article libraries grow in numbers you don’t want to overload the menus and overwhelm the consumer. One option is to move older articles into the sitemap and keep your newest articles in the applicable menu resource tab. As long as the article still lives on the site, the search engines will know it’s there and over time you will see your organic traffic increase due to these pages. However, there are some topics which can stay relevant for many years, so be sure take a look at the content before removing it from the menu.
Here at Dealer eProcess we are ready to help with all of the tips mentioned above! We have expert inventory, custom content, and account executive teams that can assist your dealership with spring cleaning your website. To learn more about our websites and services, request a demo or fill out the form below!